World News

USWNT granted unequal working conditions settlement by federal judge

Matt O'Connor-Simpson
Apr 13, 2021, 4:40 PM GMT+1
The case is a landmark in the fight for equal pay
The case is a landmark in the fight for equal pay | Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

The USWNT has had a settlement with the U.S. Soccer Federation regarding equal working conditions ratified by a federal judge.

The ruling means the team will receive improvements to travelling conditions, venue selections and increases in the number of support staff on par with the men's national team.

Megan Rapinoe
Megan Rapinoe has been one of the high profile figure campaigning for equal pay | Michael Campanella/Getty Images

However, the battle for equal pay continues. Most recently, US district judge R Gary Klausner throw out the Equal Pay Act aspect of the planned lawsuit, ending the players' chances of receiving back-pay for previous performances. This decision will be appealed before the case goes to court.

Reacting to the news team spokesman Molly Levinson said (via Goal): "Now that this is behind us, we intend to appeal the Court's equal pay decision, which does not account for the fact that women players have been paid at lesser rates than men who do the same job.

"We are committed as ever to our work to achieve the equal pay that we legally deserve and our focus is on the future and ensuring we leave the game a better place for the next generation of women who will play for this team and our country.

"We are pleased that the Court has approved the equal working conditions that the USWNT Players have fought for many years to achieve. Finally, giving these athletes access to facilities, training, care, and professional support is the next step needed in the long and hard work to grow the game of women's football."

The USSF also responded to the ruling, offering an update on their stance on the equal pay issue.

"U.S. Soccer is 100 percent committed to equal pay," a statement read. "We have offered the USWNT the identical compensation provided to our men's players for all matches controlled by U.S. Soccer.

Joe Biden, Jill Biden, Megan Rapinoe
President Biden recently backed the USWNT equal pay claims | Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

"Unfortunately, the USWNT has not accepted our offer or our long-standing invitation to meet to try to find a resolution unless U.S. Soccer first agrees to make up the difference between the Men's and Women's World Cup prize money, which is determined, controlled and paid for by FIFA.

"Our request to meet still stands, and we hope the USWNT will accept our invitation very soon. We look forward to working together to chart a positive path to grow the game both here at home and around the world."